By Robert Lipsyte
A long-time activities columnist for the 'New York occasions' combines own tales with the occasions he has coated, discussing how 'Jock tradition' has permeated company, politics, and relatives existence, and the way its definitions became the traditional to degree worth
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Had he been serious about giving me $5,000? Didn’t I want to know? Burying the lead (or lede in journo jargon) is a journalistic misdemeanor, but not asking the question the lede will be based on is a felony. Gay went off to Europe on a speaking engagement, so it was four weeks before we met again. I was wearing my hearing aids this time. We sat on the same perpendicular couches. He presented me with a copy of a letter I had sent him in 1973. So we had been in contact. I had needed to talk to him as my novel Liberty Two was inexorably disappearing into the literary sinkhole.
He told me that I had talent and would make it at the Times. I was exactly what the paper was looking for. But if I was determined to leave, he had a proposition. He spoke very precisely. ” I lost my breath. I was making $35 a week. He was offering me nearly three times my annual salary. He believed in me. ” “It’s a good investment for me. ” Of course, it was all I thought about for days. I wasn’t totally sure that he was serious (Maria didn’t think he was), but he lifted my spirit as surely as Richard Halliburton had once done.
Chapter Two The Piper When I was twenty-five,” wrote my idol Gay Talese of his early New York Times career, “I was chasing stray cats around Manhattan. . ” When I was nineteen, in 1957, I was chasing Gay Talese. I was a copyboy in the Times sports department, and Gay was a sports reporter whose feature stories were turning the so-called Old Gray Lady into Technicolor. He was showing the style that would make him the most influential of the so-called New Journalists of the sixties. He would soon write for Esquire what is considered the quintessential celebrity magazine article, “Frank Sinatra Has a Cold,” and publish such best sellers as The Kingdom and the Power, about the Times, and Honor Thy Father, about a Mafia family.